Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Let me tell you about my evening...

My wife is teaching a summer class right now. It meets in the evenings, Monday through Thursday. Fortunately, my work schedule is fairly flexible, so I'm able to come in a bit early and leave a bit early.

So last night I went home, collected Secondborn at the house, collected Firstborn from his swim lesson, collected food from Sonic, and went back home. We ate dinner and watched a bit of WALL-E. I got the boys bathed, brushed their teeth, read them books, and put them in their rooms.

Then I sat down at the computer. We had a few more minutes until it was time to turn out the lights, and the boys were playing quietly in their rooms. I caught up on Facebook, and then went to put the boys in their beds.

...And that was when I discovered that Secondborn, who just turned two, had Gotten Into Something.

At first, I wasn't sure what it was - just that it was messy, and he was smearing it on the top of his shelves. It was all over his arms and forearms, making them look slightly deformed and covered with strange growth. So I picked him up and headed for the shower, and in the process I discovered what it was: Vaseline. Petroleum jelly.

About thirty second after that, I discovered that petroleum jelly is completely immune to soap and water. At which point I left Secondborn in the shower and put up a slightly panicky post on Facebook.

I found out later that dish soap (and possibly some other things, including olive oil and peanut butter) would have worked better. At the time, I went with a mechanical solution: lots and lots of old washcloths. I basically just kept wiping until the child wasn't covered in slime anymore. Whatever was left on his skin could stay there.

However, in the midst of this, my Beautiful Wife saw the Facebook post and called to offer suggestions. This did not help, because I couldn't hold on to the phone. Too much Vaseline on my hands. It was pure luck that I didn't drop it into the toilet.

Finally, I had the child clean enough that I could dry him and dress him and put him back in bed. I did not duct tape him in, but I was very tempted.

I don't know how he does it. Firstborn got into stuff, but not like this. Secondborn... I swear, one of these days I'm going to walk in there and discover that he's been building an unlicensed nuclear reactor from Kleenex and Hot Wheels, and I'll be Googling for methods of cleaning up Radium powder.


  1. My kids have never gotten into the petroleum jelly. Will, when he was four, did cut out the screen in his 1st floor window using the teeth of a comb.

  2. The main problem is that Secondborn can get at anything, anywhere. Ain't no shelf high enough, ain't no cabinet deep enough. Maybe if I could find a way to close things up with padlocks, but then again he has a nearly-unbelievable obsession with keys...

  3. Neither of my boys have gotten into anything like that before.....yet.

    However, K2 could hook you up with padlocks and keys, he has a lot as they are just about his favorite thing. I found my laundry basket locked with several locks just yesterday.

  4. Just don't tell him about the Americium in smoke detectors and you'll be okay:


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